This version (2016/04/28 01:02) was approved by svrijn.The Previously approved version (2014/09/08 22:30) is available.Diff

Banana Hammer


“Imagine you're stranded on a deserted island. You've found bananas for food, you've found a source of fresh water, but during the storm that sank your ship, all your tools obviously sunk to the bottom of the sea, so you have nothing with which to make a decent shelter. Luckily, you can turn those bananas into hammers with the help of Science!”

Description of the Experiment

The idea is to freeze a banana using liquid nitrogen, making it so hard it can be used as a hammer. About 10-15 minutes in advance, fill a container with liquid nitrogen and place the banana in it. It is best to only submerge about half of the banana in order to leave a part where you can easily grab hold of it.

After about 10-15 minutes (with occasionally refilling the liquid nitrogen) the banana will be frozen. Then take out your piece of wood and a large nail, grab the banana by the unfrozen half and simply use the frozen part as a hammer. To demonstrate that the other half is not frozen as a banana is a poor conductor of heat, you can peel the unfrozen half and eat it.

Safety Information

The banana will be cooled to -200 with liquid nitrogen, which means that if you touch the frozen part with your bare hands, you will get burns or even get stuck to it. At these temperatures, the banana also tends to get brittle, so there is a high chance that some pieces of it will break off while performing the experiment.

Also: don't hit your fingers when hammering the nail.

Equipment and materials

- Liquid Nitrogen

- A banana

- A (large) nail

- A piece of wood (preferably a harder kind of wood to make it last longer)


Performed by

experiments/banana_hammer.txt · Last modified: 2016/04/28 01:02 by svrijn
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